The Tshwane PapersSwarms of middlemen are profiting from outrageous mark-ups on municipal deals.

Leaked documents reveal ANC patronage network of 50,000 scam suppliers of goods at outrageous markups.

The coalition governments that will run South Africa’s municipalities for the next five years face a mammoth task, having inherited bankrupt and corrupt municipalities that have become synonymous with ANC rule.

Tshwane offers a perfect example. Barely-concealed corruption is to be found in most areas of local government, ranging from crony appointments and inflated tenders, to contracts awarded to unqualified middlemen who add no value to the product they supply. Deals are often the result of a single phone-call made by the middleman, or so-called vendor, who only then pops around to the manufacturer, wholesaler or neighbourhood supermarket to buy the required goods. By the time the product is delivered to the municipality, however, the mark-up can be as much as 400%.

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